Auburn University to co-sponsor performance of Alvin Ailey for Black History Month

Auburn University is co-sponsoring a performance by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater on Tuesday, Feb. 23, at 7:30 p.m. at the Montgomery Performing Arts Center in celebration of Black History Month.

The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is an acclaimed modern dance company based in New York that inspires and entertains through performances, training and educational performances around the world.

Alvin Ailey just began a 20-city U.S. tour celebrating 2009 TIME 100 Honoree Judith Jamison’s 20th Anniversary as artistic director for the company including special activities in Washington, D.C., and a week of sold-out performances at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

To commemorate Black History Month, Vice President Joseph Biden and his wife hosted a reception in honor of Jamison and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater at the Naval Observatory on Feb. 1. Guests included members of the Cabinet and Congress, as well as students from the Duke Ellington School for the Arts.

The opening night performance at the Kennedy Center Opera House was followed by a gala dinner-dance, attended by Washington, D.C., Mayor Adrian Fenty and 700 guests to benefit Ailey Arts In Education programs and scholarships to The Ailey School.

Jamison also donated her costume from the 1975 ballet, The Mooche, to the permanent collection of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in a special ceremony with Smithsonian director Brent Glass prior to the performance on Feb. 4.

The company’s performances over the next month will include visits to Charlotte, N.C.; Atlanta; New Orleans; and Orange County, Calif. A full schedule is available at the Web site at http://www.alvinailey.org.

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater inspires and unites people of all backgrounds around the globe in a universal celebration of the human spirit using the African-American cultural experience and the American modern dance tradition. With a repertory of more than 200 works and performances in 71 countries on six continents, the company is a recipient of the National Medal of Arts and has been recognized by U.S. Congressional resolution as a vital American “Cultural Ambassador to the World.” Alvin Ailey also uses education programs to help inner-city children and residencies in public schools reach their full potential. The Ailey School offers scholarships and world-class training for aspiring dancers and performing artists of the future.

For more information on the company and its programs, visit http://www.alvinailey.org. For more information about Black History Month activities at Auburn University, go to http://ocm.auburn.edu/bhm10.pdf.

(Contributed by: Brittany Cosby.)

Contact: Paulette Dilworth (334) 844-4184 (ppd0001@auburn.edu), or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (clardch@auburn.edu)